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Dennett's predecessor brings it all together...

by Mentat
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Zero
#55
Mar11-04, 12:28 PM
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Originally posted by hypnagogue
You want physical evidence for a non-physical phenomenon?

The evidence for its being non-physical is precisely that it cannot be detected objectively. And yet, we know it exists.
Darn it, you had me all excited...

BTW, I don't want to be rude, gosh no I don't, trust me if I did you would know it...anyhoo! The evidence for something non-physical existing is that it doesn't exist, but it does? Sorry, I just can't contain that level of illogic in my head, not the same week I watched 'Being John Malkovich'. As Mentat has stated repeatedly, if you accept the perfectly logical idea that "subjective experience" is a linguistic shorthand for the incredibly complex interactions between the nervous system, sensory organs, and the world at large, there is no need to add an unproven and unprovable entity.

In other words, experience is a function of brain function, nothing more or less, and there is no reason to assume otherwise.
Fliption
#56
Mar11-04, 12:33 PM
P: 1,032
Originally posted by Zero
In other words, experience is a function of brain function, nothing more or less, and there is no reason to assume otherwise.
Where are the scientific journals and links that reductively explain how this is the case? I can't wait until they figure out how to explain colors to a blind man.
Les Sleeth
#57
Mar11-04, 12:35 PM
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Originally posted by Zero
It doesn't follow, except that you WANT it to follow.#1 in both cases assumes your conclusion. . . .

Next, I'll tell you that "non-physical" is nonsense, because if it is non-physical, it doesn't interact with the physical world, and therefore cannot be defined.
Your statement "non-physical is nonsense, because if it is non-physical, it doesn't interact with the physical world" assumes your conclusion. You do not know if that is true or not.

Originally posted by Zero
My brain engages in certain processes that we define as "experience" yes. Since those "experiences" are a function of my individual brain activity, they can be defined as "subjective". What is your point?
Again your conclusion is assumed. You do not know if experiences are solely a function of brain activity. How can you know, using purely physical-detecting research techniques, if brain function might be limited to contributing to some non-physical experiential property of consciousness?

Further, the common argument taht there is "no evidence" is to ignore those who claim they do experience something non-physical. That may not be proof, but it is evidence. In light of such experiential reports, it could be that you and other physicalists lack the consciousness skills needed to experience the non-physical (personally I suspect that is exactly what the problem is; that is, it is physicalists fetish with physical reality that blinds them to the more subtle experience of the non-physical).

In any case, because you do not experience anything non-physical (or recognize the experience) doesn't mean you can assume there is no non-physical. Your statements should accordingly be, "I am not aware of anything non-physical." One cannot extend one's personal lack of experience to be proof of a lack in objective reality.
Zero
#58
Mar11-04, 12:36 PM
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Originally posted by Fliption
Where are the scientific journals and links that reductively explain how this is the case? I can't wait until they figure out how to explain colors to a blind man.
The heck are you talking about? Explaining colors to a blind man is a purely mechanistic problem, again not requiring some magical, mysictal, or emotional explanation to cheapen reality. The reason you can't explain color to the blindman is because of hardware and programming differences. Its the same reason why I can't get a camera to play music, or hook a Mac up to a PC without serious hassles.
Zero
#59
Mar11-04, 12:40 PM
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Originally posted by LW Sleeth
Your statement "non-physical is nonsense, because if it is non-physical, it doesn't interact with the physical world" assumes your conclusion. You do not know if that is true or not.



Again your conclusion is assumed. You do not know if experiences are solely a function of brain activity. How can you know, using purely physical-detecting research techniques, if brain function is limited to contributing to some non-physical experiential property of consciousness?

Further, to say there is "no evidence" is to ignore those who claim they do experience something non-physical. That may not be proof, but it is evidence. In light of such experiential reports, it could be that you and other physicalists lack the consciousness skills needed to experience the non-physical. In fact, I suspect that is exactly what the problem is; that is, it is physicalists fetish with physical reality that blinds them to the more subtle experience of the non-physical.

In any case, because you do not experience anything non-physical (or recognize the experience) doesn't mean you can assume there is no non-physical. Your statements would have to be, "I am not aware of anything non-physical." You cannot extend your personal lack of experience to be proof of a lack in objective reality.
Getting deep into the pseudomystical gunk now, aren't we? Anecdote isn't evidence, "special abilities and knowledge' is code word for "you gotta get brainwashed to believe it", and you cannot extend your lack of satisfaction with materialism so far as to make unfounded assumptions.
Fliption
#60
Mar11-04, 12:43 PM
P: 1,032
Originally posted by Zero
The heck are you talking about? Explaining colors to a blind man is a purely mechanistic problem, again not requiring some magical, mysictal, or emotional explanation to cheapen reality. The reason you can't explain color to the blindman is because of hardware and programming differences. Its the same reason why I can't get a camera to play music, or hook a Mac up to a PC without serious hassles.
I'm asking you to show where science has explained consciousness reductively. This was your claim of certainty and I'm asking you to show me where. Where are my articles? I'm so excited!
Fliption
#61
Mar11-04, 12:45 PM
P: 1,032
Originally posted by Zero
Getting deep into the pseudomystical gunk now, aren't we? Anecdote isn't evidence, "special abilities and knowledge' is code word for "you gotta get brainwashed to believe it", and you cannot extend your lack of satisfaction with materialism so far as to make unfounded assumptions.
Zero, I see some poor behavior going on in the General Discussion forum. You might want to go on back over there and straighten it out. I'm glad they got you in charge of such an important discussion area. Hope you get that worked out.
Zero
#62
Mar11-04, 12:48 PM
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Originally posted by Fliption
I'm asking you to show where science has explained consciousness reductively. This was your claim of certainty and I'm asking you to show me where. Where are my articles? I'm so excited!
Frankly, I don't see the need to. I count it as a flaw, but not a fatal one.
Zero
#63
Mar11-04, 12:51 PM
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Mostly, it seems to be a flaw in my credit...
Fliption
#64
Mar11-04, 12:51 PM
P: 1,032
Originally posted by Zero
Frankly, I don't see the need to. I count it as a flaw, but not a fatal one.
But this has been Hypnagogue's main point in all these threads. There is no reductive explanation of consciousness because it isn't possible. So if you don't feel the need to show that there is then why are you posting in this thread?
Fliption
#65
Mar11-04, 12:52 PM
P: 1,032
Originally posted by Zero
Mostly, it seems to be a flaw in my credit...
It's spelled "Credibility"
Zero
#66
Mar11-04, 12:54 PM
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Originally posted by Fliption
But this has been Hypnagogue's main point in all these threads. There is no reductive explanation of consciousness because it isn't possible. So if you don't feel the need to show that there is then why are you posting in this thread?
Ha! Who says it isn't possible? I just said I didn't come up with it, and that's all I'm saying.
Zero
#67
Mar11-04, 12:56 PM
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Originally posted by Fliption
It's spelled "Credibility"
Ad hominem, I presume? Pleased to meet you.


Actually, the links I've found have been "pay per view"...you have to buy the research notes, and I'm sorely lacking in plastic fundage.
Fliption
#68
Mar11-04, 12:57 PM
P: 1,032
Originally posted by Zero
Ha! Who says it isn't possible? I just said [i]I[/] didn't come up with it, and that's all I'm saying.
Yes, I know this. But this thread is about why it isn't possible to be reductively explained. If you don't have any philsophically worthy comments to add to this discussion then why are you posting here? No one cares what you believe. The point of the thread is to discuss "why".
Fliption
#69
Mar11-04, 01:00 PM
P: 1,032
Originally posted by Zero
[B]Ad hominem, I presume? Pleased to meet you.
I haven't used any comments about you as a reason to make a conclusion about the issue we're discussing. I'm still looking for articles before I draw conclusions. So no Ad hominem here. I'll provide a link to definitions of these if you want to brush up on what they mean.


Actually, the links I've found have been "pay per view"...you have to buy the research notes, and I'm sorely lacking in plastic fundage.
Don't waste your money because if they actually claim a reductive explanation, they are false advertising. It doesn't exists.
Les Sleeth
#70
Mar11-04, 01:02 PM
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Originally posted by Zero
Getting deep into the pseudomystical gunk now, aren't we? Anecdote isn't evidence, "special abilities and knowledge' is code word for "you gotta get brainwashed to believe it", and you cannot extend your lack of satisfaction with materialism so far as to make unfounded assumptions.
Not me!

"Anecdote" = strawman argument.

"Brainwashed" = your paranoia.

Besides, you didn't answer my complaint properly. You are the one making concrete statements about obective reality (that the non-physical doesn't exist). If you ever can demonstrate the physical is responsible for all, then you might be justified in your claim. That is not yet proven, so it is not illogical to hypothesize that those aspects unexplained by physical principles might have a non-physical source.

I and others are mostly saying that physical principles do not yet explain everything. It is the physicalists who have lost their objectivity because they assume a priori their lack of experience means there is no non-physical. Further, they fail to properly acknowledge the very real problem of trying to observe the non-physical using physical detection techniques.

So I still say, one's fetish shouldn't influence objective statements about reality.
hypnagogue
#71
Mar11-04, 01:03 PM
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Originally posted by Zero
The evidence for something non-physical existing is that it doesn't exist, but it does?
That's not at all what I claimed. I claimed that subjective experience cannot be observed objectively, but it can be observed (subjectively).

As Mentat has stated repeatedly, if you accept the perfectly logical idea that "subjective experience" is a linguistic shorthand for the incredibly complex interactions between the nervous system, sensory organs, and the world at large, there is no need to add an unproven and unprovable entity.
When I refer to subjective experience, I do not refer to my brain functions. The two may be tied in integral ways, but that is not the point. The point is that I am referring to a certain point of view. E.g., normally when I talk about water I am referring to my macroscopic point of view of water, and the thought of H2O molecules never enters my mind. Thus even though water and H2O molecules are the same thing, I can still refer to the concept of water from one point of view without referring to the concept of its molecules.

When I refer to subjective experience I refer to my qualitative experience of the world. This is a conceptual point of view quite distinct from the concept of brain activity. I am not adding anything unnecessary; I am very simply referring to something I directly observe. If anything, it is quite necessary for me to assert the existence of subjective experience if I am to be honest with myself.

Unproven? Subjective experience is perpetually proven to me, every instant that I am awake! You are speaking as if the 1st person perspective does not exist, and that there is only a 3rd person point of view. That is obviously false.
Zero
#72
Mar11-04, 01:06 PM
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Actually, as I stated before, it is wholy possible for non-physical whatever to exist, although it escapes me as to how you would prove it. However, there is no logical reason to include it, either. Since you cannot detect, define, or measure the non-physical, there is no logical way to use it in a theory of anything. It is a fancy way of saying "I don't know", and then filling in whatever ideas make you feel warm and squishy inside.

And, Fliption, I know you dig having me around, don't fight the feeling!


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